Expensive to lease, with a cramped cabin and a limited range

What is it?

Back in the mid-1990s Peugeot pioneered usable electrical power with vehicles based on the 106 and Berlingo.

A decade and half later, the company is back with the iOn, the French maker’s version of the Mitsubishi iMiEV.

While the firm is realistic about the potential of electric cars (estimating an EU market share of 4-5 per cent by 2020) it says it hopes to sell around 50,000 iOns by 2015.

What’s it like?

The iOn is a handy 3.4m long but rather narrower than a European supermini. Rear-wheel drive does contribute to a handy turning circle, however.

It’s powered by a rear-mounted 64bhp electric motor, while the 88-cell, 16kWh lithium ion battery pack is mounted under the centre of the vehicle.

The electric motor’s full torque delivery from standstill, and the lack of individual gear ratios, make for refined and civilised progress.

The iOn is also pretty stable and steers accurately enough, while there’s just enough performance to keep up with normal motorway traffic.It’s much more at home in town, though.

Peugeot is very honest about the iOn’s limitations. It takes six hours to charge from a domestic socket and will do 93 miles in free-flowing traffic with the air-con turned off.

However, a crowded city with the air-con blowing will reduce the range to around 46 miles.

Should I buy one?

The iOn is expensive and relatively cramped, which is probably why Peugeot says it is aimed mainly at “local government and car-sharing companies”.

In terms of private sales, though, it will only hold attraction for the most dedicated of environmentalists.

Peugeot iOn

Price: £415 per month +VAT (four years); Top speed: 81mph; 0-62mph: 15.9sec; Economy: 93 miles on one charge; CO2: 0g/km at tailpipe; Kerb weight: 1120kg; Engine: Electric motor, 16kWh lithium ion battery pack; Power: 64bhp at 2500rpm; Torque: 133lb ft at 1900-2750rpm; Gearbox: Single-speed

Join the debate

Add a comment…
brompton 17 September 2010

Re: Peugeot iOn

Errm OK might be useful for invalids or parents but my bike has a range of 100 miles, runs on pasta or curry and you can fold it and put it on the train. Nice on wet days though.

Maxycat 17 September 2010

Re: Peugeot iOn

Autocar wrote:

While the firm is realistic about the potential of electric cars (estimating an EU market share of 4-5 per cent by 2020) it says it hopes to sell around 50,000 iOns by 2015.

The UK government and Boris in London will be disappointed if electric cars only reach a 4 to 5 percentage market share by 2020 but I would be surprised if they even reached that. Who is going to buy a small car costing about £24.000 with a 46 mile range in traffic? Those who think that the congestion charge will remain free in London for electric cars are dreaming if sales do take off. And what do you think the government will do about all the lost fuel duty and vat from less petrol and diesel being sold. And that is before you take into consideration that the UK is already heading for an electricity generating shortfall due to no new Nuclear or coal powered stations being built for donkeys years. The same applies to hydrogen fuel cell vehicles, or indeed internal combustion engines running on hydrogen, where is the energy coming from to produce the hydrogen? and the cost of fuel cells makes electric cars look cheap.

thebaldgit 17 September 2010

Re: Peugeot iOn

Expensive and poor range, this seems to be the norm for this genre of car where manufactures decide that by putting such cars in their range they can lower their overall CO2 figure in light of the forthcoming EU demands. Shame about the name though i.on will encourage some people to think that it might be a woman's car.